Memorial benches unveiled in Zwartewaterland to honor Covid-19 victims
Three memorial benches were unveiled this week in the municipality of Zwartewaterland, located in the province of Overijssel, to honor the victims of Covid-19, the municipality announced on Tuesday. The three towns of Hasselt, Genemuiden, and Zwartsluis within the municipality were among the hardest hit during the first weeks of the pandemic.
"The corona measures are no longer here, but we unfortunately still experience the consequences of this virus on a regular basis. With the unveiling of this corona monument, we aim to offer our community a place of comfort and hope," said Mayor Eddy Bilder in a statement.
Burgemeester Bilder stond vanavond stil bij de coronaperiode. Dat deed hij vanwege de coronaherdenkingsbanken die zijn geplaatst in elke kern. Bilder: "De coronaperiode is een periode die we niet moeten vergeten. Deze banken bieden ons daarvoor een blijvende herinnering." pic.twitter.com/GGCvYX4MNl— Zwartewaterland (@Gemeente_ZWL) September 19, 2023
The three benches are similar and made of dark bricks with the inscription "Connected. Grief. Loss. Forever in our memory” (“Verbonden. Verdriet. Verlies. Voor altijd in onze herinnering”).
Each town has unveiled its bench. In Genemuiden, the memorial bench has been installed at the former location of the war memorial in the park. The bench in Hasselt is located at Van Nahuysweg, while the bench in Zwartsluis can be found at the head of the Havendijk.
"We received positive and heartwarming responses during the unveiling," said a spokesperson for the municipality to NL Times. "Our community was hit harder than average by the coronavirus, leaving deep marks. This was evident at the unveiling," he added," he added.
This is not the first memorial for the victims of the pandemic in the Netherlands. In February 2023, the city of Delft announced plans to erect a monument in memory of the victims of the Covid-19 pandemic. The municipality allocated 20,000 euros for the installation of a special tree and a mosaic artwork. "With this initiative, we aim to reflect on the profound impact that corona has had on people," said Mayor Marja van Bijsterveldt, Omroep West reported. The monument was unveiled last week, Trouw reported.